My birthday is coming up. It’s sometime within the next few days. I’ll be forty-mumble-mumble years old. I was never raised with a birthday tradition, so I never ask for or expect presents. Instead, I buy myself something I might like.
So today, for I think the first time since the pandemic started, I went to Lakeline Mall over in Cedar Park. Y’all know I live in central Texas, so I’m not giving too much away, it’s one of only a small number of malls in the area, so I could live anywhere in this area. I could have gone to Barton Creek, for example, but I don’t like that mall. It’s a bit more dingy, in my opinion.
But this mall has some really neat shops. One of them is “Gift World Collections“, which contains a bunch of things from all over the world. Absolutely nothing there is a necessity, which I suppose it why they call it by that name, but it has a bunch of stuff that are really pretty, and frankly, expensive. There were a bunch of ceramic figurines, and I wanted every single one of them, I could have easily, easily spent a thousand dollars just on those. But I didn’t. I bought exactly one. I may go next month and buy another, but I’m trying to keep my spending down.
There’s another store called “Cool and Eclectic” that I like, so I wanted around there for a bit. It just contains random stuff. I mean, pretty much literally, random stuff. It’s packed full of fake signs, refrigerator magnets, gag gifts, pictures, etc. Nothing Japanese, but that’s alright, it’s kind of what I imagine the American version of a curio store in Akihabara to be. I spent a little time there.
And then I got accosted by a couple of hard sellers.
If there’s one thing I cannot stand, it’s someone persisting after being told no. Some guy was trying to get me to get a facial (almost certainly at Prédiré Paris, but I was too busy fending him off to check for sure). First he handed me a little packet of face cream. That’s being a good salesman, frankly. The first thing you want to do is give people something, because then they feel like they have to give you something in return. I certainly felt that pressure, but I didn’t cave. I just said no.
He kept insisting. I said no.
He insisted some more. I said no.
So then he pulled out the big guns. His coworker with big breasts and a low cut shirt. Now let’s be clear, I’m not insulting anyone. She was pretty. That’s not the point.
Now, if you really want to piss me off even more than persisting when I tell you no, you can try to bring sex into it. As you probably could tell by some posts I wrote about transactional love, I absolutely hate it when women try to use their bodies to get something from me, even if it’s just by being deliberately attractive to sell more stuff. I abhor it. At that point, I handed the little packet back (thus removing the psychological pressure), and started walking. They kept trying. I said “I’m walking away now”, walked away, and muttered cuss words for the next few seconds. Effing annoying.
Anyway, after that, I found a store called “Press Play“. It sells a lot of video game and anime inspired stuff. It wasn’t there (that I know of) the last time I went. I picked up an anime figure. I’ve started to collect cute anime figures. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because they’re pretty. Maybe it’s because I just like to collect things. I don’t know why. I don’t even know which anime they come from most of the time. But they get a place of their own to be displayed. Maybe they’ll even be worth something someday, but I won’t hold my breath. Especially because I’d rather display them than keep them boxed. The lady behind the counter was pretty much an otaku, and far more knowledgeable than me about anime stuff, so we had a brief chat about how absurd Japanese can be. Attitude wise, she was the opposite of the lady at the skincare place, and much easier to talk to.
Anyway, most expensive half mile walk ever. I spent about what I was planning to for my birthday. I bought stuff I wanted but didn’t need. And isn’t that really what a birthday is all about?
Tip for dealing with me, and I’m serious: If you want to sell me something or change my mind on something, just give me a good argument. I’ll listen to that. If the boobs (flagrantly) come out, you lost, because in my eyes, you just became a prostitute. Fair? I dunno. But it’s how I see the world. If you’re going to offer me boobs, try to have at least a semi-pure reason, please.
And that was my mall adventure for today. There were fewer people there than I would have expected for the labor day weekend, but it was still hopping a bit. Nice to have a bit of normalcy.